Shugakuin Rikyu (Imperial Villa) was a retreat designed by Emperor Go-mizunoo. It was completed in 1655 in the early Edo Era. The total area of the villa is 54,500 square meters, almost equal to that of Yoyogi Park in Tokyo. Ninety percent of the grounds are terraced fields and local farmers still cultivate them even now. The emperor loved working in the fields and communicating with farmers. There are three teahouses that are connected by paths through rice paddies lined with well-trimmed pine trees. Nijo-jo Castle, the Shogun's Kyoto residence at the same time in Japan's history was gorgeous and showy. But Shugakuin Rikyu was a simple, peaceful, and rustic place. You need to make a special application to visit this beautiful villa.
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